Thursday, September 28, 2006

Selina Higgins Joins Professional Panel

Selina Higgins is the Director of Family Engagement Programs and Initiatives for the child protective services division of NYC’s public child welfare agency, the Administration for Children’s Services. Ms. Higgins has worked in the field of child and family welfare for 13 years.

She currently administrates three large scale programs focusing on (1) case conferencing (Family Team Conferences), (2) the assessment of children entering foster care (Child Evaluation Specialist Program) and (3) Persons in Need of Supervision (PINS) diversion (Family Assessment Program). Ms. Higgins also coordinates the Babies Can’t Wait Project, which focuses upon the attachment and permanency needs of infants entering foster care, and upon the supportive needs of all infants, at home or in care. The goal of Babies Can’t Wait is (1) to ensure the safety, development, well-being, and permanency of infants by minimizing the trauma experienced by infants due to foster care placements; (2) to help expedite permanency; (3) to provide support to parents and to their infants in foster care; and (4) to provide information on early childhood development to agency staff, parents, foster parents and community supports. In addition, she chairs “The Babies Can't Wait Advisory Committee”, a multi-agency, interdisciplinary forum which focuses on providing support, training, and resources for parents, caregivers, community members and agency staff, and infusing child welfare policy and practice with a heightened awareness of infant mental and physical health, and developmental principles. Ms. Higgins also developed and administrates a citywide group work initiative that offers parenting groups, youth empowerment groups, and staff professional development groups. She has presented on permanency for infants at conferences in many states, and has published on a diversity of subjects, to include co-authoring a best practices chapter in a graduate social work text book.

Ms. Higgins has a Bachelor of Arts in Government, a Master of Arts in Forensic Psychology, a Master of Social Work, a post-graduate certificate in Social Work Administration, and is currently enrolled in a clinical post graduate program in Infant-Parent Psychotherapy and Trauma Identification and Treatment. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW-R).


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